Health & Wellness

After cancer returns, wife launches social media campaign to save husband's life

Newlywed Kate Robertson should be enjoying her first year of wedded bliss.

Instead, she is fighting to save the life of her husband, Mike Brandon, who is battling leukemia.

She posted a video online on April 23 pleading for the public to help her raise $585,000 to fund life-saving treatment being pioneered in the U.S.

Courtesy of #donate4mike
Kate Robertson is raising money to help her husband, Mike Brandon, get a cancer treatment to save his life. She posted a video online asking the public for help.

"When we got the news Mike was sick and there was nothing else they could offer, we heard about this treatment that would cost the best part of a million pounds," Robertson, who lives with her husband in Bristol, England, told TODAY.

"We had to face the reality of what that meant and the only way we had a chance was to reach out through social media.”

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Unfortunately, this isn't the first time the young couple has had to go through this terrible scenario.

Two years ago Brandon was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), a cancer of the blood and bone marrow.

It was just one month after he proposed to Kate.

After receiving the diagnosis, Robertson launched a social media campaign using #Shake4Mike to find a bone marrow donor within 60 days.

Courtesy of #donate4mike
The couple at their wedding, after Mike's first bout with leukemia.

Their story went viral and Brandon successfully found a match from among 7,000 donor registrants.

He recovered and walked down the aisle at their wedding last June. He chose the Superman theme and wore Superman socks.

"In truth, it should have been Kate wearing those socks," Brandon told TODAY via email. "She's been my ultimate superhero, and I don't think I'd have made it this far without her."

While the pair was able to enjoy a handful of happy months together, the disease returned on March 24.

Now, Robertson, 33, has launched a second campaign, #Donate4Mike, to raise funds to send her husband to the U.S., where a revolutionary leukemia treatment could save his life.

"It’s a really exciting trial," Robertson said. "The treatment (CAR T-Cell Therapy) being offered at the University of Pennsylvania’s Abramson Cancer Center has shown significant results especially for people with ALL and has a remission success rate up to 95 percent."

Robertson set up a GoFundMe page along with her YouTube video plea on April 20, and it has already raised nearly $600,000.

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"I just had this tiny glimmer of hope and I didn’t know what it would turn in to," Robertson said. "Now it’s happening and we’re going to America and we’ve been given a chance to still fight for his life and I couldn’t be more grateful."

Meanwhile, Mike is focusing on staying positive and getting better.

"I have come to the conclusion that in my role as patient, I've had the best deal on the leukemia journey, while my family and friends have had to bear the true load," he told TODAY.

"This is especially the case with Kate. While I've been able to stick my head in the sand and concentrate on fighting the unwelcome intruder in my bone marrow, Kate has given up everything to help me do this."

He called his wife the "angel on my shoulder."

"When times have got tough, my beautiful wife has kept me positive and believing that we will make it through — whatever gets thrown at us," he said.

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